After the final plenary session wraps up at the 2012 RI Convention, 6-9 May, why not stick around? Bangkok makes an ideal base for some fantastic short trips, with flights of an hour or two that are inexpensive and easy to arrange.
This island, with its mélange of Chinese, Indian, Malay, and other cultures, is the food capital of Malaysia. It also boasts lovely beaches, a national park, and an architectural heritage that encompasses the colonial Fort Cornwallis, Kapitan Keling Mosque, and Kek Lok Si Temple, a Buddhist pagoda.
The capital of Laos offers sights including the Patuxai, or Victory Gate; Pha That Luang, a massive Buddhist stupa; and Buddha Park, which contains an array of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures. You won’t find big crowds in Vientiane – just a relaxed vibe and great food.
Visitor arrivals here have increased by half in the last decade. Recently, the government has been promoting the city-state as an arts and culture destination, but the shopping is worth the trip as well.
This sprawling 12th-century temple complex, across the border in Cambodia, is a short hop from Bangkok. Walking among the temples, it’s easy to imagine life when Khmer society was at its height.
Register for the 2012 RI Convention in Bangkok by 1 December for a special rate.